Taste Test: McDonald’s UK Crisscut Fries

It has become something of a Lifehacker tradition to sample unique McDonald’s food items whenever we travel abroad. From the “McLobster/” in Canada to the Parmigiano cheese bar in Italy, there’s certainly been a lot of weird stuff to choose from. As you’d expect, McDonald’s in the UK serves more traditional fare — with the exception of a bizarre alternative to fries called Crisscuts. Here’s what they tasted like.

McDonald’s is probably the last place you’d want to go during an overseas holiday. Why would anyone choose to eat a Big Mac when there’s a smorgasbord of traditional cuisine to choose from? Well, it turns out that Ronald’s menu is quite different depending on where you go. For diehard takeaway fans, the discovery of something new can be absurdly exciting (even though it invariably tastes like crap.)

Last week, we were in the UK for the launch of BlackBerry’s Passport smartphone and 10.3 OS update. While there, we poked our heads into a nearby Maccas store to see if there were any interesting exclusives we could scoff. Amusingly, the latest addition to the menu was something called the “Big Tasty” burger — which appears to be identical to the McFeast in Australia:

Otherwise, the only menu item of note were Crisscuts: an oddly shaped alternative to fries served with a sour cream & chive dip. These are essentially deep-fried potato wedges cut into a miniature waffle shape. (If memory serves, Hungry Jack’s offered something similar in Australia a few years ago, but McDonald’s Crisscuts have yet to make the jaunt to our shores.)

A single serving of Crisscuts packs in around 1350kJ of energy, 18g of fat, 36g of carbohydrates and 0.7g of salt. This makes them slightly more indulgent than a regular fries, which contain 16g of fat and 0.6g of salt.

Despite being thicker and larger than normal fries, the Crisscuts had a crispier texture which is sure to please fans to non-soggy chips. On the downside, they also tasted oilier. I started to feel clogged and bloated after getting through barely half the box.

The size isn’t ideal for snacking either — unlike fries, you’re forced to pop them into your mouth individually. This obviously takes longer and resulted in cold chips at the bottom of the box. The sour cream & chive dip is typical of McDonald’s sauces, which is to say it’s inoffensively bland.

All in all, we weren’t particularly taken with this waffle-esque take on the French fry. If Crisscuts never make it to Australia, you won’t be missing out on much.

Verdict: 5/10

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